Lucky Girl: Kota Vignette (Complete)

This is Kota's origin story, to know more about Kota, check out Fate Sucks, which occurs a few weeks after this story. Caution should be taken while reading this as it touches on some harsh subjects and is not a happy story, that is saved for Fate Sucks.

This is a work of fanfiction and does not correspond with the Whateley canon universe in anyway. I'm just borrowing their sandbox.

November 2007

Garret shivered as she huddled beside a dumpster, a ragged coat and a reeking wool blanket were her only protection from the November wind that howled off of Lake Superior. Her mind briefly went to the home she'd fled a week before, just a few days after Halloween. That had been warm at least. She'd had her room, nice clothes, the latest games and movies, a nice laptop. Even as her half frozen mind pictured that pleasant setting, her brothers laughter cut through the memories. It had been safe, then it became a nightmare. She grabbed her knees, forcing them tighter together, hiding her small breasts, fighting a losing battle against the tears that froze almost as soon as they appeared.

For the thousandth time since her body had changed, she asked whoever was listening, what she'd done to deserve any of this.

She heard laughter from the mouth of the alley, someone said he needed to take a piss.

As footsteps squeaked in the fresh snow, she tried to force herself into the wall. Biting her tongue hard enough to bleed to keep her teeth from chattering, and begging someone she didn't believe in anymore to keep her hidden.

A teenager, drunk or high she couldn't tell came around the dumpster, his pants already unzipped. Grabbing her blanket, Garret scrambled too her feet and started running. She screamed when a hand grabbed her collar, yanking her off her feet to land on her tailbone with an agonizing crack.

“Hey guys! Look what I found!” the guy shouted, letting out a stream of urine that almost hit her.

Struggling against the much stronger guy, Garret tried to turn so she could punch him, kicking him with her heel, she even tried to undo her coat to slip away. It was useless, and she found herself looking up at six teens and men, who leered drunkenly.

“She looks cold, how about we warm her up?” someone said.

“I found her, if anyone warms her up its me.”

“Did your mommy and daddy lose you?”

“Maybe your mamma didn't give you that shirt you wanted, is that why you're out here little girl?”

She screamed as hands grabbed her. Someone leaned in as if to kiss her. Unwanted memories came to the surface, her brothers hands touching her, kissing her, pushing her down. She hadn't fought then, she'd been numbed by it all. She felt a hand reaching down her pants, and the mans lips mashed against her own. She opened her mouth a little, a tongue pushed its way in. She bit down as hard as she could.

The man fell back screaming and spitting blood. Garret jumped over him and ran as fast as she could, her long black hair streaming out behind her like a tail. There was a shot, she saw snow erupt in a small explosion. More shots rang out. She saw a fire escape coming up, putting on a burst of speed, she ran up the wall and jumped, giving herself a push as she did. Her bare skin froze against the bitterly cold metal, scrambling up, she left skin and blood behind. There was another shot and she screamed, her thigh wasn't cold anymore, it burned. Ignoring it, she kept going, even as her jeans became sticky and froze.

More shots rang out.

Something swooped out of the sky, there was shouting, and more gunfire, but not directed at her. Reaching the top of the building, Garret stumbled to a halt. Her hands were covered in blood, but whole. The agony in her thigh was dying down. Poking the wound showed only a shallow cut that healed before her eyes.

Getting to her feet, she started running again. She didn't know where she was going, she just had to get away.

A figure landed in front of her. “Stop right there!” he ordered.

Garret didn't stop, she didn't even slow down. She dove through his legs hopped back to her feet and kept going. Reaching the edge of the building, she leapt, pushing herself again to make the distance, she kept running even as the flying man shouted at her.

Arms wrapped around her body, and she found herself high in the air.

“LET ME GO!” she screamed, pounding on the iron like arms.

“Stop fighting! You're a hundred feet in the air, do you want to drop?” the man asked, struggling to control her.

Garret ignored him, still fighting tooth and nail to be let go. She heard him talking to someone, and they flew towards a brightly lit tower. A few minute later, they went through an open metal hatch, not stopping until they were in a windowless room. The door closed automatically while the man put her down in a chair.

She recognized the man now, he was one of the best known heroes of the Windy City Guardians, Wing Nut. Fear, even worse then when she'd been attacked by the men, filled her mind. They were going to send her back to her parents. To her brothers. She broke down in tears, curling into as small a ball as possible in the chair, while the hero watched her helplessly.


There was a knock on the door, Garret woke instantly from her restless sleep. A large woman in a domino mask stepped inside, pushing a cart with a bowl full of steaming water, a washcloth, and a covered tray that smelled like food.

“Did you have a good nap?” the woman asked. “It seemed like you needed it,

Garret didn't answer.

Dipping the towel in the bowl, she cautiously got closer. “My name is Furawā. Lets get you cleaned up a little, and then you can have some supper. Don't worry about what happened earlier, when a drunk has his tongue bitten off by a terrified young girl half his size, it's pretty clear who's in the wrong. You'll have to talk to the police -”

Garret was up and running across the table before Furawā could finish, yanking at the door as hard as she could. She screamed when an invisible hand picked her up off her feet, dragging her back to the woman.

“Are you wanted by the police? Is that why you're so scared?” Furawā asked, her voice even and not accusing.

“Don't send me home! Don't send me home!” she begged.

Furawā grabbed her shoulders, tried to get closer, only to get a kick in the stomach for her efforts. Letting go, she said, “Don't worry, no one will send you home. We just want to get you cleaned up and somewhere safe. You don't have to go home.”

That was all that mattered to Garret, not having to go home. Prison, the streets, anything was better than going home. “You promise?” she sobbed.

“Yeah, I promise. Just calm down and lets get the blood off of you.”

Garret took the cloth, not trusting even the hero to get that close to her, and began cleaning herself off. The foamy water tingled against her skin, obviously acting as a disinfectant as well. In a few minutes her hands and face were clean. Her stomach roared with hunger, and Furawā put the tray of food on the table.

Not worrying about any social niceties her parents had drilled into her over the years, she shoveled the rice and chicken breast into her mouth. It had been over two weeks since she'd eaten properly. When her parents finally let themselves realize that their son was not only a mutant, but turning into a girl, they'd locked her in her room and fed her only twice a day. It hadn't been enough, so her brothers had brought her snacks, but she'd had to 'earn' them.

When she was done, practically licking the plate to get every morsel, she looked at Furawā, “Can I have some more?”

“No. It's been what a couple of days since you had a proper meal?”

“Three weeks almost.”

Furawā winced in sympathy. “If you eat too much you'll get sick. You're a mutant right?”

She looked at the woman in surprise, before nodding.

“You have fresh blood around a bullet hole in your pants, it wasn't a wild guess. When did you manifest?”

“Three or four weeks ago.” She remembered watching her face changing, her breasts budding, her hips widening, growing smaller, trying to hide it until it was obvious to everyone.

“And then your parents...”

“My brothers. M-my parents, th-they let them,” Garret said, wiping her eyes angrily, tired of crying so much, of being weak and helpless.

“That's enough, you don't need to say anything else. Let's get you to a guest room, we have some clothes in the gift shop that should fit you. And we can wash your underwear while you sleep.”

She walked behind Furawā, trying to hide in her oversized shirt, with her coat over her shoulders covering her hair. Going down a floor in a fancy elevator, Furawā typed in a code to open a door. “Here you are, the bathroom is over there, it's only a shower but everything you should need is in there. I'll be back in a few minutes with some pajamas and clothes, just leave your clothes beside the door and I'll see about saving what I can and getting them washed.”

“Ok,” she said.

“Do you feel up to telling me your name?”


Furawā nodded in understanding. “We're going to need a name tomorrow. At the very least to tell the police. But you don't have to tell us your real name if you can't, not yet anyways.”

With that, Furawā left her alone.

Stripping out of the filthy clothes, Garret made her way to the bathroom. Turning on the shower as hot as she could stand, she covered the washcloth in soap and scrubbed her body until it hurt, wanting to wash away the flesh that had betrayed her so much.

After thirty minutes of scrubbing, Garret gave up in disgust. Stepping out she dried herself off and looked around the bathroom. Grabbing the electric razor attached to the wall she turned it on and viciously ran it through her long black hair. The razor jammed and died before she was able to do much. Throwing it down, she walked out, searching for scissors, a knife, anything. Finding a sewing kit, she pulled out the small scissors and began cutting her hair again, crying in pain when the blades cut her flesh.

Finally done, she ran her hand over her scalp, feeling the short badly cut mess of hair. Stepping out of the ring of black hair that coated the floor she had another shower, washing off the loose hair and bits of half dried blood. Putting on the grey Windy City Guardians pajamas, she crawled into bed, falling asleep almost before her head touched the pillow.


Waking up the next morning, she sat up and felt her long hair trailing over her shoulders and down her back again. Pulling the blanket up to her face she started to cry.


“Good morning,” Furawā said, stepping into the guest room, a breakfast tray following behind her. “You look better tod-” she stopped, seeing the hair on the floor and spots of dried blood.

Garret didn't look away from the cartoons she was watching, her face hidden by her hair.

“Come on, you don't want your breakfast to get cold now do you?” she asked, setting the food on the little table.

Garret got up and walked wordlessly to the chair, eating just as quickly as she had the night before. Furawā waited until she was done before trying to get her talking.

“Can you tell me your name now, honey?” Furawā asked.

“Dakota Morgan,” Garret responded, putting together the names of two actors she remembered.

“Hello Dakota,” the hero said, smiling sweetly. “Do you think you can talk to the police today? We'll have a lawyer present to help you.”

She nodded, trying to get used to her name. It was better than her old one. That name had too many memories, to many ties to Garret's family. She was Dakota now. Garret and everyone in that whole sick family could go fuck themselves.

“Can we do it now? Get it over with,” Dakota asked.

“Sure, I'll go make some calls. Is there anything you need Dakota?”

“Can you call me Kota?” she asked.

“Of course. I'll be back soon.”


A Week Later

Furawā and Wing Nut, walked Kota through check in at the airport. She still didn't have proper ID, but she had a stack of papers saying she could fly.

“A car will pick you up at the Berlin Airport and take you straight to Whateley,” Furawā told her. “If you don't see it, phone the number in your bag.”

Kota nodded, her face almost lost with the hood pulled up on her hoodie. They'd taken her shopping at a thrift store, that week and she had a bag full of oversized t-shirts, male hoodies, track pants and jeans, none of which really fit her, but helped hide her body.

“When you get there, you'll make lots of friends. And you can come back here for the winter vacation or go with one of them,” Wing Nut said, trying to get some real emotion out of her.

It didn't work. “Thanks.”

“Kota, remember Whateley is a safe place. You can talk to the counselors and teachers, they want to help you,” Furawā told her.

Like they could help her, she thought bitterly. No one could help her unless they could make her a boy again. “Ok.”

An announcement declared it time to start boarding. Shifting her carry on bag, she tried to smile at the two heroes. “Thanks for everything.”

Furawā gave her a hug. Kota wanted to lean in and put her head on the womans shoulder, but shrugged out of it instead.

With a final goodbye, she got in line and pulled her ticket out. Boarding the plane, she stared out the window and wondered if she'd ever trust anyone again.


“Hi Kota, I'm Theresa,” the bulky, girl who looked like she was made out of dark black loam said, giving Kota a hug as soon as she stepped into the room.

“Hi,” Kota said, struggling out of the grip of her new roommate.

“You've had the tour already right?” Theresa asked.

“Yeah, Kamuro showed me around. She said I could join the Underdogs if I wanted to.” The girl and her friends seemed nice, but joining a group was the last thing she wanted. They'd ask questions she couldn't answer, and maybe discover who she had been. Kota held back a shudder at the thought of that becoming public knowledge.

“Anna and a bunch of them are really nice, but they seem to get bullied a lot. I'll introduce you to a bunch of the girls here, we had a bit of problem with bullies at the start of the term, but after a couple of fights between the bullies and Grace and Charlie, our biggest brick and pyromancer, it's a lot better.”

Something landed on Kota's shoulder. “Oh another new girl! With Shisha that makes two in the last three weeks. And there's the glass girl over in Poe, but you have much nicer hair than they do. Partly because Shisha has cat fur, and Rona is all glass, but your hair is really pretty and it's real to.”

“Ok,” Kota said, turning her head to look at a tiny dark skinned fairy with glowing blue eyes.

“Teri, what have we told you about surprising the new girls?” Theresa said.

“Don't do it.”


“Sorry. Oh one second! Don't tell anyone I'm here!” the fairy said, jumping into Kota's hair.

A cute blonde girl in a red jacket, came storming along the hallway. “Theresa, have you seen Teri?!” she demanded.

“What did she do now?” Theresa asked.

“She used up all my green paint, how am I suppose to finish my painting for class now?”

“Just leave a note on her door telling her where to leave the money, she'll pay you back.”

Kota who was totally confused felt the fairy girl moving around on her back and tried not to shudder. From over her shoulder a tube of green paint appeared from her hair. “Here you go, Mischief. Sorry I just started painting and got carried away,” the fairy girl chirped, still hidden.

The blonde rolled her eyes, grabbed the paint and hurried away.

“Thanks for the hiding place. Can I use it again later?” Teri asked.

“Please don't,” Kota said.

“Ok. See you around, I have to get to detention. Bye bye!”

When the fairy tried to kiss her, Kota dodged out of the way, really hoping that everyone would just leave her alone. Did all girls act like this?

“Sorry about that,” Theresa said. “Teri is a ditz sometimes, but she's really a nice girl in small doses. I love your hair, did you always have it or is that part of your mutation?”

“Mutation. I had short hair before.”

“Oh you're so lucky.” Theresa ran a hand through her own straw colour hair, “My hair is the only thing that stayed the same, and it's not half as nice as yours.”

“Yeah, really lucky,” Kota said, trying to hide how much hearing that hurt. Why couldn't Theresa have gotten a body like she did. Kota would happily take the GSD, if she got to stay a guy.

“The floor is having a movie night tonight, someone got us a copy of Enchanted, and it's really, really good. I watched it in Dunwich last week, lots of romance, and James Marsden is so cute! Do you want to watch?”

“I...” Kota knew she should say yes. She was a girl. Girls liked that kind of thing. She had to pretend to be a girl, because the alternative was impossible to even think about. “No. I don't,” she said.

Theresa seemed to deflate a little. “Oh right, I guess you're tired after flying here from Chicago. Maybe next time. We've got an hour before supper. Do you want me to show you around the cottage, I can introduce you to the other freshmen?”

“I'd... I'd actually just like to take a nap.”

“Alright. If you need anything I'll be in the common room at the end of the hall. Have a good sleep.”

“Thanks Theresa,” Kota said.

When her roommate left, Kota sat on her bed. The cheap blanket she'd been able to buy wrapped around her shoulders. Why couldn't her roommate be a jerk, who she never wanted to talk to or even see? Why did she have to try to be so nice?

More importantly what was she doing here? She wasn't a girl. She didn't know what to do, how to act, what to talk about. Why couldn't everyone just leave her alone? Just let her crawl into a hole and disappear forever.

Pulling the blanket over her head, she tried to shut out the world and forget everything that had happened. She never noticed the tears until her pillow was soaked.


“You shouldn't flaunt your looks like that.”

Kota nearly jumped out of her skin, and dropped her book in surprise at the peevish voice. Spinning around to see who was behind her, all she could think of to say was, “What?”

A girl who was wearing a featureless mask, a baggy sweater, and had her head covered seemed to be glaring at her. “Look at all the unfortunate girls around you. How do you think it makes them feel to have someone with your appearance showing off how beautiful you are?”

Looking down at her baggy t-shirt which looked more like a tent, and jeans that were five sizes too large, Kota tried to figure out how she was flaunting anything. “Uh.”

“Pucelle,” Grace, who looked like a frog and was one of the toughest freshmen in Whitman, “no one cares what you think.”

“Well you might not, but what of the other girls? What about Miriam, she's going through so much hardship that it must kill her to have her face rubbed in her condition day after day.”

Kota sank lower in her chair. She'd seen Miriam a few times over the last week and from what she could make out on her face, the girl was severely depressed.

“You've been so lucky by accident, why don't you consider our unfortunate sisters?”

Grace got up, “If you keep talking, I'll throw you back to your own floor. Or maybe I'll let Teri talk to you. Can you remind me what she did to you and your boyfriend when you got on Serena's case?”

Pucelle grabbed her shirt and pants tightly. “I'm just trying to bring some equality and fair thinking to the cottage,” she insisted. She looked like she was about to say more, when she froze and started to yelp, pulling at the back of her shirt.

Snow fell to the floor and Mischief appeared her hands wet. “Take a hike Putrid, we've heard it all before.”

The sophomore clenched her fists, and took a step towards the blonde, when Grace moved in to back her up. Seeing the prankster and the bruiser were ready to throw down, she stuck her nose in the air and left.

“Kota, don't- Where did she go?” Grace asked, looking around the room.

Mischief looked just as surprised. “I didn't see her leave.”

They faintly heard a door down the hall click shut. They didn't hear the muffled sobs of Kota crying into her pillow.


“You're making puppy dog eyes again,” Kota said to Theresa as they ate lungh.

“I am not! I'm just enjoying the view,” her roommate insisted, still staring at a boy who was covered in crystal slabs.

Shaking her head, Kota wondered why girls couldn't just do something, but had to beat around the bush and ask half a dozen friends for support. “Does he have a girlfriend?”


“When he see's you does he act like you're ugly or annoying?”

“He never looks at me, he always has his nose in his textbook or something. It's like he doesn't know I'm alive,” she moaned.

Kota slapped her forehead in frustration. “He either doesn't notice you, or he's too shy to actually talk to you.”

“How can I get him to talk to me?” Theresa asked in desperation, not really expecting an answer.

“You've been watching him everyday for the two weeks I've known you, if he hasn't noticed you yet, you have to do more than stare.”

“Like what? How can I compete against all the pretty girls around here?”

From how Theresa looked at her, Kota had a good idea that she was one of the pretty girls. She fought back the urge to scream in frustration. Instead she stood up and walked over to the boy who had caught Theresa's eye.

The three GSD boys stopped talking and stared in surprise and a bit of wariness at seeing the gorgeous exemplar come to their table. Kota didn't give them a chance to think the worst. “Hey, you're Timothy right?” she asked the crystal boy.

“Yeah. Why?” the boy asked, looking around nervously.

“My roommate over there, Theresa,” she pointed at her friend, who was busy hiding her face in her hands. “She really likes you, but she's too shy to actually ask you out or even talk. If you don't have a date already, how about you ask her to meet you here on Friday for the movie. She's very sweet and likes to hugs, and I know she's been wanting to talk to you for since at least October.”

Timothy went red, and his jaw dropped.

Gritting her teeth, Kota decided to keep up the push. “Do you have a girlfriend?”


“You've noticed her in your law class right?”

“Well yeah, she's cute. But...”

“You like her?”

“Uh, well, yeah.”

Kota grabbed him by the arm, getting him to his feet. “Great, she likes you. Now go ask her out.” With that she gave him a shove towards Theresa.

Once she was sure that the idiot was going to actually talk to the pretty girl, Kota shook her head at how much simpler it would be if girls would act more like boys and boys would actually open their eyes a little. Done with her good deed for the month, she left Crystal Hall and went for a bit of quiet time in her room.


“How could you do that to me?!” Theresa snapped, as she came into their dorm a few hours later.

“Do what?” Kota asked.

“You practically threw Timothy at me!”

“Did he ask you out?”

“Yes, but that's not the point!”

“Did you say yes?”

“Well, duh, yeah I did.”

“You're welcome.”

“But, it was embarrassing!”

“Would you be going out if I hadn't done it?”

“Maybe...” Theresa said quietly.

Kota snorted. “Yeah right. You're welcome.”

“But. I. You... Thanks.”


“Hey Kota, how does this lipstick make me look?” Charlie asked, probably out of desperation, there were only the two of them in the common room, everyone else was out or in their rooms.

“It looks nice,” she told the girl, who's rainbow skin was made out of scale like crystals.

“Are you sure? I want to look my best. I finally got back together with Glitch, and it's really important.”

“He'll love it. Believe me,” she said. Kota really had no idea if it looked good or not, she could barely look at it.

“Thanks. I know you don't wear makeup, but that's because you always look perfect. I would kill to have your skin. You're so lucky, you must have to fight off the boys in class. Bye.”

Charlie never noticed how Kota curled up into a little ball on the couch as she rushed out, her high heels clicking on the floor. For her part, Kota didn't notice her either.

'It's her birthday today, and our parents have finally let her wear makeup, so can you make her look fantastic?' Jonathon, her oldest brother told the beautician, smiling pleasantly.

Kota didn't know what to do. She'd finally turned fully female that morning, and for the first time in almost two weeks she'd been let out of her room. Her brothers had taken her out and gotten her a great meal outside, gotten her some new clothes, and were treating her like a million bucks. She didn't want to be a girl. She didn't know how to match the three boys who she'd adored when she was a boy, and were being so nice now, to how they'd acted for the past week, kissing her, feeling her budding breasts, touching her butt, and only then giving her some extra food.

So she just went with it. They were treating her like a sibling now, a sister rather than a brother, but it was better. They'd just been as confused as she was.

She tried to act calm and even happy as the makeup was applied, and the beautician told her how to do it herself. When it was finally done, she had to admit she was better looking than most models. Her brothers, Jonathan, Neil and Hector, all praised her and the beautician, before leading her to G-Mart. They made her dress up in costume after costume, until picking out the frilliest most girly pink princess outfit in the store. She'd tried to say no, Jonathan grabbed her arm, squeezing it hard enough to hurt, and told her to behave.

They'd bought the dress and had another nice meal out. By the end of it she was feeling a little less self conscious. When they got home, her Mom and Dad had taken one look at her and turned away, as if she didn't exist. Not giving her a chance to cry her brothers led her upstairs to her room.

Not knowing what was happening, she looked up at her brothers, who she loved and had always felt safe around. They leered at her.

Jonathan grabbed her shoulders. “Garret's dead now. He doesn't exist anymore. So you don't exist either. You're just a pretty little toy that's taken his place.”

She'd started crying, saying she did exist, that she was real. They'd shoved her onto the bed, ignoring her tears, her screams.

Kota ran to the window opening it up and jumped out into snow below. Running away until she was surrounded by trees, and completely alone. Sitting in the snow, not caring if she froze to death, she wept.


Kota sat huddled on the roof of Whitman, the freezing cold December night reminded her of the nights sleeping on the streets of Chicago. They'd just been told about the combat finals earlier that day. How did they expect her to fight. She was a girl, a weak, helpless girl who only knew how to run away.

They'd put her in the ring and she'd get beaten, hurt, humiliated all over again.

Glaring at her tiny, weak hands, she tried to remember what she had looked like before everything had gone to hell. She couldn't. The boy she'd been seemed so far away it was like trying to see a ghost, the haziest of outlines, where there should be real flesh. She knew that no one had hurt her when she'd been Garret, she'd been happy, her brothers had loved her, her parents hadn't disowned her.

She imagined the combat final, fists hitting her, the crack of bones, her screams, blood, so much blood, the laughter as she was hurt again and again. But this time it wouldn't be private, done behind closed doors, everyone would see.

She'd stayed quiet for the most part, hiding from anyone who could hurt her, a nonentity below anyone's attention. Just a badly dressed girl who didn't make waves or noise. They'd see her now. They wouldn't stop laughing afterwards.

She was so weak, she couldn't fight. She couldn't do anything.

Standing up, she looked at her body. It was small, no it was tiny. So frail, it was amazing she didn't just break. Her hair whipped around her face, grabbing it, she ripped out a chunk, it would grow back soon enough.

The wind that howled around her sounded like the laughter of her brothers.

The girls in the cottage below seemed so happy. Some where unhappy about how they looked, but they could find moments of happiness. Talking with friends about their lives, about their hopes and dreams.

What could she talk about?

If she talked about her past, she just reminded herself of what she had been, of her family that had betrayed her, destroyed all that was left of who she'd once been. For the future, what did she have? Being weak. Helpless. All her dreams had gone the same way as her past. What could she do now? No one was there to help her. No one cared about her. For Christmas she was going to visit friends of Theresa's. She didn't know them, she didn't know anyone now, her own family had cast her out after destroying her. Her friends wouldn't recognize her.

What did she have to live for?

Without even thinking about it she threw herself over the edge.

The snow met her, softening the blow a little. She felt her bones crack, her entire body ached, but the pain didn't end. And no one came out to see her.

Ignoring the pain, the scraping of bone against bone, she curled up into a ball and wished that it would all just end, even as her body healed.

Looking up at the stars, wincing in pain, biting her tongue to keep from screaming when her bones snapped back into position, she decided she'd wait until after Christmas. If something came up that gave her some reason to keep going she would. Otherwise, she'd walk into one of the forbidden areas of the school. From how everyone talked even her damn regeneration wouldn't let her walk back out.

“Please, just give me one good thing. Just one,” she begged the night.


“Kota, how are you feeling today?” Dr. Bellows asked.

Her stomach still felt queasy from jumping the night before. She just shrugged, “Same.”

He hid his irritation well, he'd gotten the same answer from her every time he talked to her. “Mrs. Savage said you seemed upset about the combat finals yesterday. Are you afraid of fighting?”

“I don't know why she'd think that. I don't care. It's just a fight. It's not like it can kill me.”

“Most students are worried, it's not exactly common in most schools.”

She shrugged. If she told him anything it would just be something that could hurt her later when he betrayed her. She'd gotten good at ignoring his questions.

“Do you want to tell me about your brothers? It can help to talk about it.”

“They hurt me, I ran. I don't have to see them anymore. Everyone's happy.”

“You clearly are not.” He pulled a sketchpad from his desk and a box with charcoal pencils, mechanical pencils, pencil crayons, even crayons. “I'd like to try something different today. Draw a picture for me. Anything you want.”

“I didn't think this was art class, but ok,” Kota said. She took the sketchpad, and a mechanical pencil. Making a small scratch on the paper she handed it back, with a smile. “A polar bear in a snowstorm.”

“Very good,” he replied as if she hadn't been a smartass. “Lets narrow things down a little. Please draw how you feel.”

She took the pad back, ripped off the first page, and handed it back unmarked. “I don't feel a thing.”

That was typical of how she'd responded to everything. Giving as little as possible, pushing back without getting violent, putting as much defense between her and everything else as possible. “Songbird has told me you aren't going to any of her group counseling sessions, or even the one on one discussions. Why not?”

“They're boring. Lots of crying and hugging.”

“Maybe you could use a good cry. Crying can release a lot of the negative emotions and stress that hold you back.”

She listened to him natter on and on, zoning out until the doctors voice was a comfortable hum. Like he'd understand what was wrong with her.


Walking to lunch, Kota sighed at the girl who was walking up to her. The biggest problem with Whateley was all the psychics and empaths. It was worse after a session with Dr. Bellows, she always felt itchy after talking with him.

“Caroline, I'm not in the mood,” she told the blind girl who was walking confidently towards her, a young cat bounding in the snow close by.

“Kota, I know I shouldn't pry, but your aura is almost pure black, I've only seen something this bad once before,” Caroline said, brushing long, dark brown bangs away from her rose coloured glasses.

“I thought psychic's weren't suppose to pry into things like this?” she said, having read up on psychic ethics the week before after having to run away from some kid who was begging her to stop putting off such negative emotions.

“I can't turn off my sight, I can't tell others what I see, unless I think you're going to commit a crime immediately. But asking you what's wrong, asking to let me help you is allowed. I can help you, I won't change your emotions, I'll just ease the negative ones back a bit so you can see some light.” She was practically begging. “Please, the last time I saw anything like this, the person ended up in Doyle for weeks.”

“I'm fine. I get to see Dr. Bellows every three days and he hasn't put me in the loony bin yet. So mind your own business.”

“Why are you so afraid to accept help?” she asked.

“I said go away!” Kota yelled. Her body moved without any real thought trying to push the blind girl away.

Caroline easily moved out of the way, her cat growled like a tiger, doubling in size. “Dawon! NO!” she shouted at her cat.

“Leave me alone!” Kota shouted.

Running towards the gate leading to Dunwich as fast as she could, Kota tried to escape her feelings, her past, her entire life. Hours later, falling to her knees, finally out of breath, she pounded the snowy road.

Why wouldn't it stop hurting?

"One thing. One fucking thing! You owe me that much!" she screamed at the sky.

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